Housing strategies and policies

The Derby Housing Strategy 2020 - 2029 recognises that everyone needs a safe and settled home and that this is essential to our health and well being.

The strategy sets out or plans for continuing the delivery of housing and effective management and related services. It contains a number of measures to deliver its priorities and to ensure that we have sufficient resources to improve the homes we have and to build more affordable housing.

The existing Tenancy Strategy, which plans how the Council and some Housing Associations will continue to manage their houses and operate their tenancies, is currently being reviewed and updated, to reflect the current government guidance and legislation and council priorities.

Download the Tenancy Strategy 2021.

In 2018, the Homelessness Reduction Act (2017) was introduced, making big changes to homelessness legislation, placing additional duties on local authorities particularly in terms of preventing homelessness and making appropriate assessments. These changes underpin our new strategy.

This new strategy sets out our vision for tackling homelessness and rough sleeping in Derby over the next 5 years. All local authorities are required to produce a Homelessness Strategy which must set out plans for preventing homelessness and securing that sufficient accommodation is and will be available for people who are or may become homeless.

This is the first time we have produced a homelessness strategy that is joint with rough sleeping also. In Derby we welcome this approach and the focus it will give us for meeting the needs of some of the most disadvantaged and complex members of our community.

In writing our Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Strategy we have carried out a review of homelessness in our area. We have also carried out an extensive consultation programme to ensure we have been able to fully inform the development of the Action Plan, which is the driver for progress and change in homelessness services across the city.

Read the latest version of the Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Strategy Action Plan

A new Older Persons Housing Strategy has now been developed for the period 2019-2029. The new Strategy takes account of the rapidly growing population profiles amongst older people and the shortage of suitable older person housing. It also considers the need for appropriate support services necessary to help older people to live independently for longer. The priorities within the strategy aim to help provide a wide range of good quality, affordable accommodation for our older citizens, along with appropriate information and advice, to enable older people to make informed and appropriate choices.

The Strategy provides a review of how we have addressed the priorities of the previous strategy which has informed the planning for the new strategy. This has undergone widespread consultation and supports the overall Council long term plan to improve the quality of life for everyone. The Strategy details the full set of priorities for the ten year period, with details of actions on how we aim to deliver these.

The Older Persons Housing Investment Prospectus is a key part of the broader Older Persons Housing Strategy. It focuses on the extent and profile of the most acute shortages and highlights investment opportunities which could be used by developers to address these shortages. As such, it is intended to encourage and facilitate new developments which are financially viable and sustainable.

We are committed to work in partnership with private developers, local communities, social enterprises and Registered Providers in order to meet the housing needs and aspirations of our older residents.

This prospectus is an important tool to help accelerate the volume and pace of development across the sector. It seeks to encourage investment in new housing for older people in Derby. It does so by highlighting the extent and location of the most pressing demand and sets out what the Council will do to support developers.

In Derby, like most parts of the country, there are many more people looking for houses than there are houses available.

For Council and housing association homes there are 4,000 active applicants on our housing register or 'waiting list'.

Because there are not enough houses for everyone that wants them we have a system to decide who gets the housing that becomes available. This system is called our 'Allocations Policy', and it is designed to ensure that people in the greatest need have priority. This unfortunately means that some people who want a Council or housing association home will not be able to get one.

Where people approach us for housing we assess their level of need. Households that are currently homeless or at risk of homelessness, or living in unsafe or over crowded housing, are considered to be in the greatest need. Other households may have lesser degrees of need.

We house as many people as possible, but where there is not an available home from Council or housing association stock we sign post to other types of housing such as renting from a private landlord. We can provide advice and assistance about how to go about this.

For more information, read our Allocation Policy 2020-2025‌.

Poor housing conditions continue to cause preventable deaths, illness and accidents. They contribute to health inequalities, and affect people’s life expectancy and their overall quality of life.

The Housing Renewal Policy explains how we address these issues in privately owned housing. It sets out how we promote, encourage and, where necessary enforce, the improvement and better use of private sector housing in Derby.

For more information, email housing.strategy@derby.gov.uk.

Download the Private Sector Housing Renewal Policy 2021 - 2030

A safe, settled home is the cornerstone on which individuals and families build a better quality of life, access services they need and gain greater independence. Good quality, well managed housing is essential to our health and wellbeing. However, building new housing alone, is not enough as it does not address inadequacies within the existing private sector housing stock.

The last Private Sector Housing Stock Condition Survey in Derby took place in 2007. Since then there has been been considerable changes in the use and condition of private sector housing. There has also been a huge, research backed, growth in awareness that poor, unsafe or unsuitable housing impacts detrimentally on our health and wellbeing. Our housing stock is aging and will only continue to deteriorate without timely intervention and investment.

This private sector housing condition report findings will pose us many challenges in these tough financial times.  However, it will prove invaluable in updating and enhancing our understanding of conditions within the private sector stock. This will help to inform and focus our future years’ strategic approach to improvement of this sector.

We class ‘long-term’ empty properties as properties that have been empty for six months or more.

Empty homes:

  • are more at risk of crime and antisocial behaviour and put a greater demand on emergency services, such as the Police and Fire and Rescue Service
  • put adjoining properties at risk of damage
  • can bring a sense of decay and decline to a neighbourhood and may make an area less inviting to tenants, property owners and investors
  • are a waste of accommodation at a time of high housing demand.

What is the Council doing to address the empty homes issue in Derby?

Our Empty Homes Strategy 2021-26 explains how we will address the issues of empty homes in the city.

 The current Empty Homes Strategy is under review and is due to be implemented in 2021.

We work with owners of empty properties to see them brought back into use. Our aim is to help and persuade owners to bring their property back into use without the need to take enforcement action.

Our Enforcement and Prosecution Policy aims to improve neighbourhoods and increase housing choice by returning empty properties to the useful housing stock.

Lease your empty property

You can lease an empty property to a housing association for five years. You will benefit from a guaranteed monthly income for five years without needing to worry about void periods, tenancy management, rent arrears and more.

Further information can be downloaded about the Sustainable Tenancies Project.

It's important to make sure we are aware of 'equality groups', and try to minimise any negative effects the strategy may have on people in these groups.  This includes disabled people, minority ethnic communities, women, people with particular religious beliefs, lesbians, gay men, people who are bi-sexual, or transgender people or perhaps younger or older people. We do this by carrying out ‘equalities impact assessments’ on all of our strategies and policies.

Information can be found on the following documents:

For further information, visit our Our equality commitment page.


Strategic Housing


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Communities and Place
Derby City Council
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